Saturday, December 2, 2023

If you have something to say about those e-scooters in town, you might want to take part in this

Bird scooters in front of the Virginia Beach Convention Center (Rami Yoakum/Southside Daily)
Bird scooters in front of the Virginia Beach Convention Center (Rami Yoakum/Southside Daily)

VIRGINIA BEACH — The survey asking for residents input on the regulation of e-scooters in the city is live as of Thursday.

City officials announced the five-question poll is open until Sep. 3 with an intent to “help guide the future of motorized scooters and their impact on the transportation landscape of the city.”

“The survey results will be shared with city officials to help create policy and determine guidelines to ensure a safe atmosphere for riders, citizens, and visitors,” officials said.

The questionnaire is part of the Shared Mobility Task Force’s first initiative to regulate e-scooters by modifying current city codes and license only qualified e-scooter vendors to operate in the city through a franchise licensing public procurement process by Dec. 31.

RELATED STORY: Virginia Beach city officials want to address the e-scooter issue — now

Brian Solis, assistant to the city manager for special projects, who heads the task force, announced in City Council’s Aug. 6 informal meeting the team has been working with the city’s communications department to finalize the survey as part of the “stakeholder involvement and community engagement” step in the initiative.

(Southside Daily/Courtesy of Brian Solis)
(Southside Daily/Courtesy of Brian Solis)

Solis pointed out the task force is seeking feedback from the public as well as appointed boards, committees, and commissions including the Virginia Beach Council Civic of Organizations, the Bayfront Advisory Commission, and the Bikeways and Trails Advisory Committee.

Solis said they’re looking for discussions based on four questions:

  1. Where do you think motorized scooters should be prohibited?
  2. Where do you think motorized scooters could and should be permitted?
  3. What other measures can motorized scooter companies do to ensure safe rider behavior?
  4. What other regulations should the city consider adopting to ensure safer motorized scooter use?

The fifth and final question on the survey is “open-ended and allows participants to provide feedback that fosters a balance of safety and scooter access,” officials said.

Solis has also said the team is collaborating with other localities like Alexandria, Richmond, Arlington, and Norfolk who have revised their city codes or have piloted e-scooter programs for shared mobility.

RELATED STORY: Richmond and Norfolk have e-scooter advice for Virginia Beach

To access the “Virginia Beach E-Scooter Policy and Use” survey, click here. 

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